UK Innovation and Science Seed Fund expands fund by £37m to boost support of British innovation

Inside_the_JET_fusion_training_facility_GOV

The UK Innovation and Science Seed Fund (“UKI2S”) is expanding its patient capital fund by £37m.

UKI2S is an early-stage investment fund backed by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) and other public bodies. Together, they are supporting the most ambitious UK innovators at seed and beyond to facilitate sustainable growth, enhance the health and security of society and deliver economic gains from the UK’s publicly funded research. UKI2S is managed by West Midlands-based Midven Ltd which is part of Future Planet Capital Group.

The expansion of the fund builds on UKI2S’s successful track-record in nurturing early-stage firms furthering UK science and innovation. The additional funding will enable UKI2S to initiate and expand investment across the following sectors to help solve critical challenges:

Synthetic biology: A highly innovative area of research that applies engineering principles to biological systems to enable novel solutions to major global challenges. There is a strong opportunity across this industry for the UK to lead in creating and delivering significant economic and societal impacts on the global stage.

Knowledge assets: The UK’s public sector is a key source of innovation, with rich research and insights. UKI2S will work closely with the new Government Office for Technology Transfer (GOTT) to provide investment capital to exploit the UK’s public knowledge assets including intellectual property, innovation, and data. GOTT is due to launch later this year.

Fusion energy: Fusion promises to be a low carbon and sustainable part of the world’s future energy supply. UKI2S will support companies contributing to and arising from the UK’s world-recognised fusion technology cluster, attracting further investment, and developing the supply chain and skills base to accelerate future fusion delivery.

Defence and security: UKI2S’ dedicated defence and security portfolio backs early-stage companies that can positively impact defence and security. It invests in SMEs developing products and services that are capable of dual use in both civilian and defence and security sectors.

Publicly funded research centres, science & innovation campuses, and the Catapult centres: UKI2S will continue to back early-stage companies developing innovative products and services, in addition to technology emerging from public sector partner laboratories, those based on UKRI partner campuses and those working with the UK Catapult Network.

Andrew Muir, Investment Director at Future Planet Capital Group and Fund Principal for UKI2S, said: “The Fund has a strong track record of generating impact from publicly funded science and research hubs across the UK. The fund’s expansion will help drive innovation with our partners, across research campuses and from synthetic biology industry, in addition to accelerating the development of high growth potential businesses in defence and security, fusion and exploiting the UK’s knowledge assets.”

Dr Liz Kirby, Director of Innovation at the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), said: “I am delighted to announce the expansion of UKI2S as we boost investment in the UK’s most disruptive early-stage companies that are leading the way in finding solutions to the problems that we face across society.”